How the Dominican Republic Was Ruined

Tibby note: Because a couple of radio stations put these tales on their websites, I try to adhere to their rule: If it can’t be talked about or said on the radio, the story won’t get posted. I like that rule. Sure, it’s my website, but I want you to enjoy my stories without being offended by their language. That said, I push those boundaries for the honesty of this story. I think you’ll understand.

It was a cold morning in January. Since we live in Georgia, it may have been 35 or 40 degrees. We were freezing.

Over breakfast, we discussed the possibility of going someplace warm for a few days. By noon, our travel agent had set us up at a resort in the Dominican Republic.

If you don’t have children, pets, or jobs (retired), spur of the moment vacations can happen.

We are fortunate to have a travel agent astute enough to warn us the great deal at this all-inclusive resort was due to the fact that it was brand-spanking‘ new. It’s likely, she warned, they don’t have all the kinks worked out yet.

No problem. We’re really easy travelers. Stuff happens, you roll with it.

Stuff happened. Funny stuff.

Upon entering the room – OK, it was a suite - our 19-year old host began pointing out the amenities.

A mini-bar in both the kitchen and the bedroom. Impressive. Except they were stocked with Coors Light.

“Can we get Presidente (local beer) instead?” I asked.

Holding up a can of Coors Light, he said, “This is Presidente, I think. Just a different style.”

No, buddy, that’s a can of Coors Light.

And since it probably came from the brewery closest to the Dominican Republic, I’m guessing it’s been imported all the way from Albany, Georgia.

But hey, he’s 19, and it’s possible he saw Presidente and Coors Light coming off the same truck from a distributor. He gets a pass on this one.

By the way, Albany, Georgia, has some rocks but is not in the Rockies.

Day two:

“Have you gotten your free welcome gift?”

No, we hadn’t. But we know this routine. Your free welcome gift comes after you attend a meeting pitching ‘membership’ in the resort’s brand.

Also known as timeshares.

Timeshares are fine for a particular type of vacationer, but we’re wanderers and not a good fit. So, we have learned how to say no politely but convincingly.

These guys were not (immediately) taking no for an answer and proceeded to point out that our gift would contain several bottles of local goodies: liqueur, vanilla, etc.

Because of the language barrier, it took a little time to get across to them that we don’t check luggage when we fly. We travel with carry-on bags only. There was no way we could take those bottles on the plane. Especially that 750 ml bottle of liqueur.

“Is no problem,” one explained. “You wrap it up in your dirty clothes and sneak it on.”

Hello! All these years of travel, and all I had to do to fool the x-ray machines was to wrap stuff up in my dirty clothes? I am such a dummy!

The IRS should let me write the trip off as an educational expense.

Speaking of educational experiences, boy, did we ever get one from a young group of fellow Georgians that set up camp next to us at a pool one day.

Keep in mind, it’s an all-inclusive resort. Drinks are free. As the liquor flowed, so did the conversation.

We heard about everything: trucks, tractors, favorite menu items at Burger King. It was all good.

Until someone got stung by a wasp.

Faye wasn’t the one that got stung, but it turns out, she’s had the worst recent experience because she’s allergic to bee stings.

“It caught me right on the back of my thigh, and it swelled up my leg from my knee all the way up.”

A girlfriend encouraged her to give out all of the details. “Tell ‘em about your butthole, Faye.”

“Aw, yeah, my butthole swole up something awful. It was a mess.”

Thanks, Faye. Thanks for the memories.


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